You are viewing 1 of your 2 free articles

You’ll need to join us by becoming a member to gain more access.
Already a Member?

Login Join us now

Rachel Lewis-Davies: Over the wall farming on a visit to the Peak District


I write this month’s article from the pretty Derbyshire village of Ashford-on-the-Water in the Peak District, which we are visiting for couple of days to celebrate Bob’s BIG FIVE-O.

Twitter Facebook

The fact he has even agreed to come away is a sign he is getting older I think! Having not visited this part of the world before, we have been struck by the stunning views and lovely villages. The open countryside and minor roads mean the area lends itself to the ‘over the hedge or wall’ farming and it is clear and good to see the landscape has been shaped and is maintained by a strong farming industry.


During a visit to Chatsworth, and with delusions of grandeur, I note the similarities with my own humble abode. I too enjoy a fabulous outlook of the surrounding countryside, am able to boast a specimen of the rare Weeping Ash in the grounds and note people have also taken ‘trailing’ around my house in their outdoor footwear – I only wish I could charge for the privilege like the Duke and Duchess.


There is plenty of grass up here just as ours seems to have disappeared over the last couple of weeks, having to buy-in fodder for the cattle. Probably a case of ‘too many mouths’, we have observed a notable difference this spring in the performance of the new leys and also the limed ground, highlighting the need to keep progressing the improvements apace, or at least as soon as we can afford to do them.

Work placement

Our daughter Ceri, on work placement on a dairy unit in Pendine, Carmarthenshire, since February, comes home this week returning to Gelli Aur to complete year one of the agriculture course.


Her three-month experience has been thoroughly enjoyed, and has had a transformational effect with plans to purchase some Holstein bull calves to rear over the summer. This will involve a bit of re-jigging at home and we now plan to grow some kale so we can outwinter the Welsh Black heifers to free up the shed space.


All in all, it is wonderful to see Ceri so enterprising and sincere, thanks must go to the Evans family and their staff, in particular herdsman Lisa – a more inspirational woman in agriculture you could not wish to meet. Diolch yn fawr i pawb.


Twitter Facebook
Rating (0 vote/s)
Post a Comment
To see comments and join in the conversation please log in.

More Insights

Marrying intensive farming with wildlife conservation

Arable productivity need not be compromised to make way for greater biodiversity, this year’s NIAB TAG Outlook Conference in Durham heard. Abby Kellett reports

Promoting Scotland's small-scalers

Smallholders in Scotland are soon to have their own representative organisation. Rosemary Champion, one of the 12 trustees behind the move, believes the new body will be unique in the UK in terms of its remit. Ewan Pate

Showring promotion key to safeguarding rare breed

With only 417 Middle White pigs registered last year, the commitment of breed enthusiasts has never been more vital.

Getting into bees

A hive of bees can prove to be a productive addition on any farm or smallholding, yielding honey for the kitchen while increasing crop yields and quality. Farmers Guardian reports.

Red Polls revive a traditional cheese

Stepping away from the commodity dairy market, Alan and Jane Hewson resurrected a traditional regional cheese to create their own niche market. Aly Balsom finds out more.
FG Insight and FGInsight.com are trademarks of Briefing Media Ltd.
Farmers Guardian and FarmersGuardian.com are trademarks of Farmers Guardian Ltd, a subsidiary of Briefing Media Ltd.
All material published on FGInsight.com and FarmersGuardian.com is copyrighted © 2016 by Briefing Media Limited. All rights reserved.
RSS news feeds